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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm not sure if this belongs in "Plant Physiology" but I'll put it here for now.

I have this consistent problem with topping and replanting R. indica: right after replanting one, it will grow out a few more puny leaves with the internodes becoming very short. Then it will stop but a new branch will shoot off from a lower node. This branch will grow out beautifully... Until I have to trim and replant it. Then it does the same thing. Nowadays I usually leave the rooted portion in place because the new stems that form from it are fine.

While it sounds like I'm grasping at straws here, my theory is that when I replant a cutting, energy suddenly goes into growing roots; during this time, the proper growth of the stem/foliage is compromised. Once the roots are well-formed, the plant resumes growth - which may be most practical by forming a brand-new branch.

Anyway, I'm sure this isn't the case for everybody. Is there something I can do - nutrient-wise - that would allow the stem to continue growing normally after being cut and replanted? Maybe add a piece of Jobe's at the base of the replanted stem?

Tank info:
10 gallon
28W PC light (6700K)
Eco-Complete
DIY CO2
Low-to-moderate liquid fertilization (specifics upon request)

Thanks.

-Naomi
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Paul - I'm getting pretty obsessed with iron lately, too. I'm seeing less of a number of problems since I increased the dosage, but I'm afraid that in *most* of the re-planted R. indica stems, this particular problem is not going away. Every now and again, a stem will continue to grow from the same tip, but only after putting out a few puny leaves, first. Looks weird. Sometimes, I even take a cutting from this 10-gallon and plant it in my 2.5-gallon tank with 8W NO fluorescent lighting, Flourite, DIY CO2, and basically close to the same dosage of iron as the 10-gallon, just scaled down. I even leave the cutting tall enough so that the tip is close to the light, but the same problem occurs, except that it takes longer for the new branch to make its appearance. Would it help to boost the iron at the roots? Like root tabs that contain iron?

John!!! Hi!!! It's so good to see you here. It's been a while since we've been in touch. Last time, you were still using plain gravel in that 15-gallon(?). Those reds were incredible! I saw you post somewhere that you replaced it with richer substrate. Believe it or not, I'm dosing Flourish Iron in my 10-gallon at 1.25 mL *per day*. On top of this, I'm adding about 10 drops of Flourish; I think this contains iron, as well. So while I think that this is actually enough iron for most of my plants, it still appears to be on the low side for others. This may be why my Alternanthera reineckii has NEVER looked good in my tank. The lower leaves of my M. umbrosum get ratty really fast. And M. matogrossense has been experiencing a slow, excruciating death - I'm down to the last two stems, which I'm sure are going to die very soon.

So are you saying that you only replant the top 2" of the cutting and let it branch out? I guess that's a way to do it... It's really a shame, though, that the beautiful, full-grown stems can't just be replanted and expected to continue its beautiful growth. If I could grow out 5-6 stems at the same time, I could always try to sell them. But it just never seems to work out this way.

Anyway, thanks. I may try dosing an additional 0.25 mL iron per day and see what happens. But I'd be a little worried about adding more than this.

-Naomi
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
John, that's beautiful! I would not even try E. stellata with the way my plants are growing at present.

I think this will catch you up a little bit on what's been happening in my tank:
http://www.aquaticplantcentral.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=182

So the GH in the tank was high (~13dH), and apparently, so were the macros - to the point where the amount of iron and traces I was adding were not enough to keep up. I've discontinued the use of Equilibrium as well as the buffers, but I only do ~10% water change per week, so I'm pretty sure that the GH is still up there. Tom suggested that the CO2 levels are probably too low, and I'm certain that this is the case, as well. I can't test for it with the pH/KH/CO2 chart, however, because up until a week or so ago, I was adding the buffers.

As for my macros, I've cut back to 1/2 of KNO3 (from the max I was using), 1/2 mL Flourish Phosphorus, and add very minimal K2SO4, each on a daily basis.

Anyway, I guess as long as the offshoots are growing nicely, I shouldn't really complain. It wasn't so long ago that I couldn't get it to grow at all.

Thanks again. And John - I'd love to see the rest of that tank!

-Naomi
 
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